As told by New Girl
By Eliza Adler
- Stigma still exists! Many people do not understand mental illness, so when they talk about it they perpetuate stigma. Using words like “psycho” or “cray-cray” to describe someone who is suffering from an illness is very harmful.
- Mentally ill people are not violent! Mental health is often only talked about when a mass shooting or other violent event takes place, but this isn’t fair. Most mass shootings or other violent acts were not committed by people who are mentally ill.
- There are many people in the US who are mentally ill! In 2013, around 43 million adults in the US suffered from mental illness. This is a huge percentage of our population!
- Our history of taking care of people with mental illness is not a positive one. We used to send mentally ill people to asylums, where they were mistreated. In the 1960’s President Kennedy tried to close most of these asylums and open therapy centers in their place, but his plan was never carried through.
- Many mentally ill people are in prison. In the US, about 2 million mentally ill people go to prison each year. This is expensive and dangerous, and does not help the mentally ill at all.
- Police violence often involves the mentally ill. In about half of all police incidents where the police killed someone, the person was mentally ill. Some police departments are encouraging training programs for officers to learn more about how to deal with mentally ill people on the job, but this is not widespread.
Last Week with John Oliver, 2015.